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The History of The Football Game

Date Added: November 13, 2012 08:47:54 PM
Author: Latelle Smith
Category: Recreation & Sports
The Greeks would play a game called “harpaston”. The game would consist of a few players on each side trying to get the ball across a goal line and pass it on to another player. The other team would try to stop it in any way possible. There were no rules that had to be followed and anything was acceptable as long as you were able to stop them. In the 12th century the game became extremely popular in England. In fact it became so popular that some kings would ban it so that people should play the other traditional sports. However that didn’t help too much and it continued to gain popularity. Seven schools soon adopted the game however rules had to be enforced. Six of the seven schools worked together and formed the same rules. The seventh school “Rugby” enforced its own rules and regulations. They had a crossbar that was 10 feet off the ground that the ball had to pass over and they also added a few goal posts A lot of the sports that were played in England were adopted in the United States as well. Over time the football game gained popularity in England which automatically made the people across the Atlantic more enthusiastic about it too. After the civil war the athletic clubs would sponsor all sorts of sports teams and football became a must in every respected athletic club. This led to the historic day of November 11, 1869 when the Princeton and Rutgers universities met for the first time to play against each other. It was the beginning of a sports tradition where universities would meet and play against each other. At first the teams had twenty players on each team. Rules were constantly changed in order to meet the needs of the players and their safety. However in order to ensure that everyone plays by the same rules representatives from the four universities Rutgers, Columbia, Princeton, and Yale met and established the new organization of IFA or ” Intercollegiate Football Association”. One of the groundbreaking rules that they introduced was that there were only 15 players per team. This worked well for a while however, in 1882 the coach at Yale, Walter Camp enforced new changes one of them being that they reduced the players to eleven per team. Although the rules of the game were constantly changed most of the time it was only to perfect the game itself and not the safety of the players. This resulted in a lot of deaths and injuries which led to a number of schools banning the sport. In order to save the game President Theodore Roosevelt invited representatives of Princeton, Harvard, and Yale to a meeting where they discussed ways to save the game. This led to a second meeting with about sixty other schools. There they formed an organization called the “National Collegiate Athletic Association” or the NCAA as it is more commonly known. They elected seven members for the board that sat down and changed around a lot of rules and regulations so that it should be a game that is played safely. Today football is a major part of the American culture. However it went through a lot of changes until it became the game which is known today. The next time you watch a football game you can appreciate it so much more knowing all the changes that it went through since its early days. To learn more about football check out http://www.footballhelmetsplus.com
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